Salvation Army warming center serving at full capacity this week
EMA Director Spencer Hawkins says Macon-Bibb is preparing for a possible winter freeze this weekend. Right now, dozens of folks are going to the Salvation Army to for warm place to spend the night.
With more rain and cold temperatures ahead, Macon-Bibb County is preparing for the first winter weather of the season. “I'm really worried about the ice and people being out on the roads,” said Spencer Hawkins, Macon Bibb County EMA Director.
With a possible winter freeze arriving earlier than expected, county leaders are making plans to get people out of harm's way and into a place that's warm. “We support the Salvation Army, and what that is, an opportunity for some of our most vulnerable population to get out of these cold temperatures,” said Hawkins.
With more than 100 people inside at once, staff at the Salvation Army have their hands full. “You can see some of the blankets around me. As you can imagine, those go very quickly,” said Major Andrew Gilliam with the Salvation Army. “We were definitely in overflow stage last night.”
All 122 beds were full and nearly two dozen emergency cots were used as well. Gilliam expects that number to grow. “The weather that we're looking at, the Emergency Management Agency predicts that we're going to be in very cold circumstances over the next few days,” said Gilliam.
Major Gilliam says the warming station can add at least 200 emergency cots for families and individuals. The Salvation Army is open every day of the year, but the warming station plans to remain open until next Tuesday, December 12.